I hope you enjoy taking a closer look at some of the things I find interesting.
- North America (155)
- South America (171)
- Amphibians (10)
- Frogs and Toads (10)
- Arachnids (41)
- Fungi (3)
- Insects (215)
- Ants, Bees, Wasps and Relatives (44)
- Barklice (1)
- Beetles (27)
- Butterflies and Moths (55)
- Cockroaches (2)
- Dragonflies (1)
- Earwigs (1)
- Flies (20)
- Grasshoppers and Relatives (9)
- Mantids (3)
- Net-winged Insects (7)
- Termites (5)
- Thrips (1)
- True Bugs (57)
- Walkingsticks (1)
- Webspinners (1)
- Mammals (2)
- Millipedes (1)
- Polyxenids (1)
- Plants (3)
- Reptiles (13)
- Velvet Worms (3)
- Amphibians (10)
Can you spot the spider corpse here? Looks like it succumbed to some sort of fungal infection. Fungi are quite diverse and I don’t recall ever seeing one quite like this one. Here’s a closer view.
I suspect that webbing is probably from the spider itself. It probably was hiding inside a silken retreat when it died.
Would the fungus properly be called an arachnopathogen? I think so but there’s practically no hits when I search for that term.
I did find a photo with a similar looking fungus on BugGuide though. Sadly, no info on the identity of the fungus. It’s neat to see that the photo was taken not too far from where I live though.
This attractive green huntsman spider in the family Sparassidae (formerly Heteropodidae) was concealed beneath a leaf. With such a striking green color, it must hunt primarily in foliage.
When I found it, it was concealed within a silken retreat on the underside of a leaf. The texture of the silk is interesting.
That wouldn’t do for photos though, so I poked at it until it removed itself.
That did allow for some nice closeup shots though, like this one of the eyes. I always try to get a shot like this to help in the identification.
Spitting spiders in the family Scytodidae are easily recognized by their high dome-shaped carapace. They are named for their behavior of spitting a liquid that turns gooey on contact, ensnaring their prey.
Although they occur in my area, I’ve never seen one around my home. For whatever reason, I don’t think I’ve made a trip to Brazil yet where I haven’t seen at least one. This one was on the underside of a small log.
I found this little tarantula (family Theraphosidae) under a rock. It could be full-grown, but I suspect it’s young and far from its adult size. It blends in quite well with the rocky ground.
Despite its small size, it’s definitely got attitude. After some prodding, it demonstrated a classic threat display.
One of my brother-in-laws offered to drop me off for a few hours in a forested area on one of his farms. I was thrilled, but perhaps a bit anxious when he offered me a revolver in case I encountered a jaguar. I turned down the gun and if there was a jaguar in the area I never saw it.
The first critter I found was this odd looking spider. I spotted it while breaking up a rotting log. It’s quite flat, evolved no doubt for squeezing into tight spaces. I wanted to grab it for a closer look, but it managed to fall into the leaf litter and escape.
This little salticid has captured a small fly of some sort.
White scales on the chelicerae almost look like a mustache.
This wandering spider in the family Ctenidae was spotted at the base of a large tree.
The large palps leave no doubt that this is a male.
The eye arrangement was my first clue to the family. They also have a deep groove along the mid-line of the carapace, called a fovea, just barely visible in these photos.
I wasn’t able to identify this one any further than family. It’s quite a large spider though. The body measured 25mm (~1″) and with legs it was around 80mm (~3″).
Some species of Ctenidae have a nasty reputation. Suspecting at the time that this was a Ctenid, I kept a respectful distance.